San Andreas Fault Observatory at Depth

Site of Special Scientific Interest

Schematic representation of the SAFOD borehole and pilot hole
Location within California
Area of Search California
Coordinates 35°58′27″N 120°33′09″W / 35.974028°N 120.552425°W / 35.974028; -120.552425Coordinates: 35°58′27″N 120°33′09″W / 35.974028°N 120.552425°W / 35.974028; -120.552425
Interest Seismic
Area Monterey County

The San Andreas Fault Observatory at Depth (SAFOD) is a research project aimed at collecting geological data about the San Andreas Fault for the purpose of predicting and analyzing future earthquakes. Located near the town of Parkfield, Monterey County, California, where quakes of Magnitude 2 frequently occur, the project has installed geophone sensors and GPS clocks in a 3-kilometre borehole that cuts directly through the fault. This data, along with samples collected during drilling, could shed new light on geochemical and mechanical properties around the fault zone.

SAFOD is part of the Earthscope Project, an earth science program using geological and geophysical techniques to explore the structure of the North American continent and to understand the origin of earthquakes and volcanoes. Earthscope is funded by the National Science Foundation in conjunction with the USGS and NASA. Data collected at SAFOD are available from The Northern California Earthquake Data Center at U.C. Berkeley and at the IRIS DMC.

See also


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